How it all began

MONOCAB OWL is supported by:

The MONOCAB project got its start in 2018 when the Landeseisenbahn Lippe e.V. association won the German Mobility Award with its project "Gyro-stabilized monocabs on rural railroad lines".Thorsten Förstern, a member of the association, had the idea for "MonoCabs." With small cabs that offer space for two people and run on a rail on the paternoster principle, it should be possible to reconnect the disused tracks of the Extertahlbahn to the rail network in the long term.

In the past, there have already been several research projects dealing with the principle of a monorail. Most of them failed to be realized because a new infrastructure had to be created for these concepts.
This is different with MONOCAb. The project builds on an existing rail network, which would be reactivated and reused. In this way, MONOCAB could help rural areas that were already connected to the rail network in the past to regain mobility. A new infrastructure will be created in rural areas, which will also make them more attractive and strengthen them.

So it was with this idea that the Landeseisenbahn Lippe e.V. association entered the "German Mobility Award" competition in 2018 under the name "CountryCab" and won.
With this success and the grant money behind it, the project took off.

The project applied for a tender of the Ministry of Transport. As part of the REGIONALE 2022, TH OWL simultaneously developed four lead projects for networked, autonomous mobility services in public rail and road transport. One of them, the AutoBAHN project, addresses a prototypical autonomous rail transport from Lemgo via Dörentrup to Barntrup. The two projects of TH OWL and Landeseisenbahn Lippe e. V. provided a perfect basis for cooperation.

And so the project took on more and more structures. Cooperation with TH OWL and FH Bielefeld began - research, development and testing took place.

October 03, 2022 was one of the most important days in the young history of the MONOCABS. On this day the MONOCAB drove for the first time in the open air. At a big presentation, besides the "tech demonstrator" named Thusnelda, also the original design mockup of the cabin was shown. The project participants (TH OWL, FH Bielefeld, Fraunhofer IOSB INA and Landeseisenbahn Lippe e. V.) invited to see the project results!

Further development will still take several years. However, we are confident that MONOCABS will be able to start regular test operations in East Westphalia-Lippe from around 2027.

The German Mobility Award

Animation: "Gyro-stabilized monorail monocabs".